Helping clients manage their technology for over 30 years.

Want to know what a disruptive technology in action looks like?

Guy looking at cloud shaped like an arrow.

A recent issue of InformationWeek pooled data from an assortment of that publication’s own surveys to offer some insight into the current state of Cloud use by IT shops. We also get a few hints about both the degree and direction of Cloud momentum and its power as a disruptive technology:

  • 11% of IT departments have a major Cloud implementation in place [Global CIO Survey, February 2012].
  • 20% have a formal company policy to evaluate Cloud options for any new services or systems; 27% prefer to use the Cloud [Cloud ROI Survey, November 2011].
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Cloud computing in 2012: Growing up fast

As 2012 begins to wind down, we at Quest are finding that interest in Cloud computing continues to wind up. Our experience is borne out by recent research, which indicates that the business drivers for Cloud computing haven’t shifted much. Here’s a chart from North Bridge Venture Partners’ 2012 report:

Graph showing Cloud drivers including: Cost saving, efficiency, etc.

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How safe are your apps?

Key icon to represent security

A recent report by Forrester Consulting suggests your web applications may be far more vulnerable than you think. According to Forrester, 51% of the 240 North American and European companies surveyed experienced at least one application security incident since the beginning of 2011. And 18% of those suffered losses of at least $500,000. For 8% of those surveyed, losses topped $1 million.

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What is the role of security in application development?

Unlock the Keys to Application Development

The majority of developers are not security experts, and secure coding is historically not identified as a priority. Oftentimes, the arduous task of vulnerability identification and remediation cannot be successfully addressed by limited IT security resources.

Look for an app development services provider who offers a time-saving solution for all types of security testing — outsourced, individual, and enterprise-wide analysis — and for all types of users, including application developers, build managers, Quality Assurance (QA) teams, penetration testers, security auditors, and senior management.

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Security in the cloud: What you need to know

Cloud icon with a lock to represent Cloud computing security

Cloud computing gets immense attention these days as a profound agent of change affecting how IT serves the business. In particular, Cloud computing has begun the untethering of employees from their desks and their offices. Because the mobility of today’s, and tomorrow’s workforce cannot happen without the Cloud.

Yet worries about Cloud security abound, and for good reason: Cloud computing that involves processing sensitive or regulated data in shared environments needs extra scrutiny in terms of security (as well as codifying requirements, defining a cloud services contract, managing the transition from in-house to cloud, and overseeing the resulting mixed IT environment).

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What’s Happening to the IT Department?

Where once IT departments were the sole source when it came to technology implementation, today technology is finding its way into corporate America through nearly every department.

Marketing folks may have been among the first to leave the IT department fold when they ditched cumbersome CRM systems for easy-to-use Salesforce.com, but they were just the tip of what has grown into a pretty big iceberg.

Virtually every day sees a new app available to help workers be more productive — and those workers aren’t hesitating to download those apps and get on with business.

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Securing your virtual environment

Securing Virtual Cloud Environment

Odds are your IT environment is somehow engaged in virtualization — either directly in your data center or indirectly via the service providers you’ve engaged.

But how much have you — or your IT people — thought about virtualization security? This matters more than you may think. One Gartner analyst has estimated that 60% of virtualized servers will be less secure than the physical servers they’ve replaced.

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Think it can’t happen to you? Think again

Target with a cluster of bullet holes around the bulls eye.

Two kinds of security threats have emerged of late that need special attention, even if you’re running a small enterprise: Targeted zero-day attacks and advanced persistent threats.

Targeted zero-day attacks
Microsoft’s recent Internet Explorer security flaw (see my last blog post) is a fine example of a zero-day attack. The attackers got their edge from speed, since reactive countermeasures that depend on threat signatures — such as patching and tools like antivirus software and intrusion prevention — couldn’t be updated fast enough to halt the flaw.

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The importance of IT security vigilance

Importance of Managed IT Security

Last September 18th, Germany’s Federal Office for Information Security warned that nation’s population not to use Internet Explorer because of an IE security flaw “is already being used for targeted attacks” designed to lure users to an infected website which, when visited, allows hackers to take control of the user’s computer. Soon after, the Swedish government issued a similar warning.

Even worse, Microsoft was not immediately able to fix the problem. First came a temporary patch, said to be less that complete.

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Essentials to business disaster preparedness — #5: Test your plan and review it often

Why Test your Business Continuity Plan Frequently?

Business continuity plans aren’t worth a whole lot if they don’t work. And you cannot know whether or not they work unless you test them.

So that’s my fifth step toward business disaster preparedness: Test your plan — often.

Testing your plan frequently is essential. Change has a way of sneaking up on organizations, and those changes can disrupt your carefully laid plan to overcome disruptions. Fortunately, the right service provider will include regular testing in the price of your service.

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